Fish-inspired pottery

Back in July, my wife and my mother attended the Sioux Narrows Arts Festival, an annual event that attracts the top artists from around the region.
After, they returned home they both mentioned that the highlight of all the cool stuff they saw were these handmade bowls and mugs with fish prints on them.
A short time later I came across these really cool mugs on Instagram that had unique fish prints on them. I showed them to my wife, Shelby, and she excitedly announced that they were the same ones she saw in Sioux Narrows.
After that, I found out that all of this fish printed pottery was being made by Kiefer Floreal, whom I had some connections to.
His mother, Hilary, babysat me when I was a little guy and his uncle and grandfather were both teachers of mine.
I had also fished with Kiefer and his grandfather, Ferg Penner, one afternoon on the ice several years ago.
I sent Kiefer a message a short time later and told him how cool I thought the stuff was that he was making and that I wanted to order a pair of mugs.
Based out of Dryden, Kiefer had a couple mugs delivered to Kenora a short time later and I finally picked them up earlier this week!
Once I got them I can tell you that they look even better in person than they do in the photos.
Any serious coffee drinker, which I am, can appreciate a good quality mug and that’s what these are.
They are 100 percent hand thrown and each mug has a unique print of a fish tail on them, usually that of a walleye.
Some of Floreal’s plates and bowls have entire fish prints on them.
It’s always great to see local people doing their own thing, being really good at it and enjoying some success.
Floreal, in his early 20s, enjoys fishing and crafting his own pottery items so blending the two activities was only natural.
In addition to mugs and bowls, he is also crafting pitchers and vases, pots, wine glasses, spoon rests and plates.
Not only are the fish prints unique, the colours he incorporates into all of his stuff are classy as well.
They are designed to fit in perfectly at any place on the lake across Northwest Ontario.
If you want to check out more of Kiefer Floreal’s stuff you can visit his Instagram page (@kflorealpottery), his website or watch for him at area craft shows.
Since my parents retired a few years ago and made Sioux Narrows their new home, I know one of the favourite weekends of the entire summer for my mom is the weekend of the Sioux Narrows Arts Festival.
There is a lot of great regionally and lake-inspired art being created out there and much of it is showcased at this event.
If you ever have the opportunity to check it out, I encourage you to do so.